The anatomy of the implosion of the Champions League of Barcelona.
Leo Messi Does Not Promise A Lot, Usually Complies. But When The Little Genie, Before The 2018-19 Barcelona Season, Said That His Main Objective Was To Recover The Champions League Trophy To Barcelona, there Was Conviction That It Was Impossible To Ignore.
Until Tuesday, Barcelona Was Well Underway. They Were Not Near The Best Of The Electrifying In 2009-12, But At One Time The Catalan Giants Played Like A Machine. We Had Come To Believe That He Was Well Greased After His Cruiser To The Title Of League And Once He Read 3-0 In The Game Of Ida Champions League semifinal At Nou Camp, The Perception Formed Was 'it's Coming Home', Completely Overlooking The Fact That It Was A Highly-flattering Scoreline Where Barca Could Have Easily Conceded Two.
Also Last Year, Barcelona Seemed Unstoppable Until The Ida Fourth Party Where They Led 3-1 Against Rome, Only To Lose 3-0 Away And Conceding The Match. But Unlike Last Year, The Presence Of Arturo Vidal In The Midfield Made Barcelona Look A Little More Solid, Especially Against Their Opponents In The League. The Defense, Also, There Was No State Under Much Scrutiny Until Now, But All That Changed On Tuesday. TOI Analyzes The Anfield Implosion That Has Ensured A First Non-Spanish Champion In Europe After 2013.
Excessive Dependence Of Messi And Suarez: Even As The Two Conjured Magic To Ensure Full Domination In The League, There Was A Gnawing Suspicion That Something Was Not Right. Take The Recent Visit Against Villarreal, A Side Struggling To Save Relegation In The League, For Example. After Being 2-0 Up Before Half-time, Barca Without Messi, Were 2-4 Down With 10 Minutes To Go. Messi Had To Be Introduced And The Argentine And Uruguayan Ensured That Barca Were Able To Salvage A Point. It's Not That Messi Had A Bad Day At Anfield, But There Was Not Anybody Who Could Have Done The Job For Him On Tuesday. In Comparison, Ronaldo Did Not Score In The Two Legs Of Real's Semifinal Against Bayern And Final Against Liverpool Last Season, Yet The Team Won.
Misfit Coutinho: Coutinho, Who Was Brought To Barca From Liverpool In A High-profile Transfer, Has Not Been Able To Deliver. True, He Did Not Get The Central Role Of Liverpool, But The Brazilian In His First Full Barca Season, He Has Not Been Able To Cut In From The Wide Positions Of The Way Neymar Used To. And As The Season Progressed, Coutinho Lost Confidence, Raising Speculation He May Not Be At Barca For Long.
Finishing The League Too Soon: It’s a tricky thing to happen. We have seen in the past teams like Bayern Munich and Juventus winning the league by end of March and then falter in Europe. Probably, an element of complacency creeps into the system when a team is so dominant in the domestic league, thereby not factoring in the danger of walking on thin ice that is Champions League .
Where Is Umtiti? He Was A Towering Presence For France In The World Cup And Looked For Great Support For The Super-dependable Gerard Pique For Barcelona. But With Injuries And Consequent Lack Of Form, The Frenchman Has Lost His Place To Compatriot Clement Lenglet. There Was A Phase On Tuesday When Barca Looked Pulverized Against A Team That Was Playing Without Its Two Best Attacking Players. The Solidity Of An Umtiti Was Sorely Missed, Even Though Barcelona May Already Have Decided To Get Matthijs De Light From Ajax For Next Season In The Frenchman's Place.